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Buffalo's This Week in Movies, July 6, 2009: Public Enemies, Transformers, Proposal

Posted: Jul 06, 2009

Johnny Depp and Christian Bale star in PUBLIC ENEMIES, loosely based on the real life story of notorious gangster John Dillinger. Depp is Public Enemy Number One Dillinger, while Christian Bale, fresh off of his role as John Conner in Terminator Salvation plays FBI agent Melvin Purvis, the man charged by J. Edgar Hoover with the task of apprehending the sly Dillinger.

There’s lots and lots of gunfire, cool period costuming and awesome cars, but I must confess, the nearly two and a half hour run time had me squirming in my seat. I mean, Marion Cotillard is lovely as Depp’s girl friend Billie Frechette, and the whole movie harkens back to films like Bonnie & Clyde, but it just seemed to drag. Still, you gotta hand it to ‘em, when the action does get underway, it’s pretty intense.  I give it three point five out of five stars.

Sam Witwicky (Shia LaBeouf ) again joins with the Autobots against their sworn enemies, the Decepticons in Michael Bay’s TRANSFORMERS: REVENGE OF THE FALLEN. It still tickles me that this whole blockbuster franchise was based on some 1980’s toys by Hasbro.

Of course, it isn’t the great special effects and gigantic robot fights that everyone is talking about, it’s Megan Fox as    Mikaela Banes, an actress who was virtually unknown prior to leaning over the open hood of a car in the first Transformers film. Seems now she is being hailed as the “new Angelina Jolie.” Well, she is a babe, but Angelina?

There was a bit too much humor in this one gang. I mean, the whole thing with Sam’s parents at the college campus and his mom eating pot brownies. You’d have thought she dropped acid. And the two short Autobots using all the hip hop attitude bordered on racist, really. I almost expected to see them dribble a basketball and eat watermelon. Yeah, a bit much.

Still, there was major action, and like a fellow traveler said to me in the lobby, “I’d pay the admission price just to sit and gawk at Megan Fox for two hours. Well, maybe. Four Stars

Sandra Bullock stars as Margaret Tate, a major New York book publisher in Disney’s THE PROPOSAL, a very fun film that also stars Ryan Reynolds  as her assistant Andrew Paxton. Margret is a first class bitch, and the entire office is scared to death of her.

When a mistake in her visa paperwork crops up, Margret is told she is being deported back to Canada, and will lose her cushy job, so she gets a brainstorm, telling everyone that she and Andrew are getting married. You can see where this is headed.

She ends up going with Andrew to his parents’ home in Alaska, where she meets the family, which includes hard ball father Craig T. Nelson, mother Mary Steenburgen and Grandma Annie, played by Betty White. In fact, White steals the movie as the eccentric Grandma who is having her 90th birthday. I won’t give too much away, but I will say there are a lot of laughs here. I really enjoyed this one. Four and a half stars.

-Michael Buffalo Smith


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midnightrider says...

Man Buff, I thought Public Enemies was a five star extravaganza. I loved it! This may be the first time I disagreed with you!!

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